Chaos Space Marine Tactica
All right well after seeing some of the tacticas coming up for the Chaos I have decided to toss out a crash course on the Chaos Space Marine (CSM) arsenal.
For the HQ’s in the CSM Codex we find that a lot of them are not all that viable. Not because their stat lines are all that bad but because they can be instant popped by a Fist, or a Lascannon the points being spent on them is hard to justify.
Lately competitive lists I have seen include Daemon Princes, Chaos Lords, and / or Chaos Sorcerers. These Three choices have been the HQ’s of choice for different reasons.
The Daemon Prince
is especially popular for many different reasons:
1. It has a great stat line. (WS 7, S5, T5, etc)
2. It can be given Wings to increase movement to make it a larger threat
3. The marks are not overly expensive and they all can be effective when used.
4. They are able to take Psychic abilities to further diversify them.
5. Fearless, a Static Inv save, and the best of all Eternal Warrior.
are not my first choice but they are certainly Viable for their own reasons:
1. They only cost 90 points base
2. They have an enormous war gear selection to suite them for a number of purposes whole at the same time being able to fit with a squad they are attached to. Examples include giving him Terminator armour to fit in with terminators, a Bike to equip him to a squad of bikers, etc.
3. He has a little better stat line which helps him out a lot.
4. The real downside to this character is he can be instantly killed which I find a turn off.
are another Great HQ choice because they unlike the Lords can cast magic.
1. They can hide amongst troops and cast spells.
2. They have a slightly higher imitative and weapon skill
3. The Sorcerers can be instantly killed as well but their ability again just like the lord to hide within squads increases their survivability.
Before moving to the Elites I would like to touch on the Marks of Chaos. By now most people are aware of the benefits but I will briefly go over them.
The first mark is the Mark of Chaos Glory
. This mark is simple It allows a re-roll on failed morale. Its not an amazing mark by any means but for units holding objectives and what not having that re-roll can come in handy.
The second mark is the Mark of Khorne
. This mark gives the marked squad excluding and independent characters +1 attacks to their profile.
The third mark is the Mark of Nurgle
. This mark gives the marked squad a +1 toughness stat modifier.
The fourth mark is the Mark of Slaanesh
. This mark gives the marked squad a +1 initiative modifier.
The last mark is the Mark of Tzeentch
. This mark gives the marked squad a +1 to their invulnerable save. Units that don’t have an invulnerable save now have one.
Elites: The Elite choices in the CSM codex are a toss up as far as effectiveness goes. Played right they can sway games in your favor but with unlucky rolls, coming onto the table at the wrong times, etc can sway the game for the opponent.
Chosen Chaos Space Marines
are the first choice under the Elite slot. These marines have quite a wide range of war gear, they are also able to take 4 special weapons oppose to the standard two per 10 models which makes them in say rhinos really effective. Rolling a rhino up with a squad equipped with 4 Melta Guns, dumping them out in front of a vehicle… well chances are its going to destroy their selected target. They also can take cool things like pair lightning claws, power weapons or power fists (again only on 4 models in the squad)
are the second choice under the Elite slot. These Rock solid and heavily armored units are tough as nails. Unfortunately the game has become a heavy weapon and armor war so terminators fall just like MEQ marines when it comes to heavy weapon shots. This does not mean they are not useful. These being able to deep strike behind lines and use combi-weapons make them a decent threat. But for 30 points a model risking deep strike is a tough decision. Terminators can also be given a Land Raider as a dedicated transport. They can also be given lightning claws, as well as marks but with these come more points invested into a unit that can sometimes be a gamble during game play.
Possessed Chaos Space Marines
The Special ability breakdown:
You can toss the Possessed in a Rhino and move them a full 12" gettting closer to the enemy.
You can't assault out of a moving Rhino. (Obveously this depends on having first turn or not)
Zerkers anyone? Str 6 on the Charge? Certainly can't complain about that!
When it comes to foot slogging, you have no ranged weapons so you must run. Having fleet allows for a number of new tactics with vehicles.
N/A imo again this ability has a variety of tactics that come with it.
Best with IoS (striking before most) but I think IoK is best to maximize swings to allow the possibility of more rending attacks.
Pretty dependent on vehicles for movement.
Speaks for itself really.. its FnP can never really complain about it. it simple = higher survivability. This with IoN or IoT always makes it that much more interesting.
If they are stuck foot slogging.
IoS and IoK are the best here. Giving them more attacks or the chance to strike first with power weapons makes any MeQ squad shake!
need double armed!!!! lol
HELL NO imo.. waste of points. For a squad that is very unpredictable I would not invest any more points then the bare minimum on these gents only because you don't know what they are going to do.
With out a doubt.... YESSSSSS
My Possessed set ups:
5 man squad:
These I just use as a gamble squad and maybe cause the enemy to think free things to shoot at and they veer away from the real threats.
10 man squad in a rhino:
Slap them in a Rhino enough said!
The last Elite squad is the Chaos Dreadnaught
. These things are always a hoot. Nothing like shooting your 220 point Land Raider in the back side(yes is happens). But in all seriousness I see most dreads equipped with a pair of CC weapons. Their weapon selection is the same as any other generic dreadnaught its just their Crazed special rule that people tend to cause hesitation when selecting units.
Chaos Space marines strengths in my opinion lie within their complex troop selections.
The first troop choice is the generic Chaos Space Marines
. These guys are probably the worst of the chaos troops because they come with the least benefits but this also means they are the cheapest points wise. They also are able to take a number or heavy weapons as well as take a mark to better suite their purpose on the field of battle. They are also the only troop choice that is not fearless.
is listed next in the Troop section of the codex, as it is a dedicated transport for everything covered within the troop section. These little mobile walls in my opinion are worth every point and I strongly recommend them with every squad. These 35 points not only provide faster movement to the squad inside but they also shield them from heavy fire, they also can be used to contest objectives on last turns, they can also be used in several rhino walling tactics as well as manipulating LoS.
The next Troop choices are the Plague Marines
. These guys are as tough as nails and can slug it out with the best of units. Their toughness 5 base really makes them last a lot longer during game play. The Toughness 5 combined with Feel No Pain is a beautiful combo. These marines get their standard 3+ save, and then IF they fail they have a 4+ to follow. These Marines also carry blight grenades, which negate assaulting units +1 attack modifier for charging. But “power comes with a cost” these marines cost 23 points each and they are initiative is 3 oppose to the standard 4 but the way I view it is as long as you are not stupid and charge them into terminators they can usually stick it out with ease to allow them to swing back.
These next troops are pretty interesting and their tactics are quite interesting and unique. The Noise Marines
are masters of sound technology and bring sonic weaponry to the table. Noise Marines have a variety of weapons special to them. They are "their long range shooting (Blastmaster) and their close quarters shooting (Doom Siren) are excellent infantry/MEQ killers. I5 and a Power Weapon on the Champion will finish off any survivors from the Doom Siren's onslaught" (1)
because being able to swing first is always a good thing.
The Khorne Bezerkers
are next up and they are nothing short of a good time. These badass close combat specialists get in your face then eat it. Their primary objective is simple, get their and kill it or be killed. Using that theory and having furious charge they flatten units.
Lastly the Thousand Sons
, My first ever army back in the 3rd edition. These marines are a ranged bombshell when played correctly. They are a fairly expensive but they come with AP3 bolters, and a permanent 4+ cover save. They also have slow and purposeful which means they can move and shoot their maximum range. These guys however are the worst in close combat. Generally if they get into CC you are losing a lot of points doing something that they are not specialized in. The sorcerers that the Thousand Sons must take as champions of their squads can take one of the following: Bolt of Change, Warp Time, Wind of Chaos, or Doom Bolt. Most people take Doom Bolt for because it’s the lowest point cost and it is essentially more AP3 bolter shots with the same range. These troops in Rhinos excel a lot more them being foot slogged across the table.
Fast attack have really fell short in the CSM codex, even though the theory behind them is very cool and the potential is there, the execution / ability to execute falls way short.
The first choice is the Chaos Bikers
, these guys are fast and can get into combat / pop specific vehicles really fast. Their draw back is their punch is not all that hard and therefore not all that worthwhile. They are also very expensive for what they can do which is never something appealing to CSM players.
The second and last fast attack choice is the Chaos Raptors
. These things never do well, and if they do that means 1 of 3 things:
1. Your opponent ignored them
2. You got extremely lucky
3. Your opponent could not stop laughing and had to call the game early.
…. I can’t say I have ever used these nor do I think for 40 points per they are remotely worthwhile. So if anyone has any info on how they do in games that I can add in this tactica I will gladly input it and give you credit for the information.
The Chaos have a wide variety of Heavy support to aid them in battle. Some obviously better then others.
are the first and a pretty popular choice. They can take a wide range of heavy weapons and are pretty cheap too! They provide a great long-range support choice for the CSM.
are probably my favorite Heavy unit for a few reasons they are able to do a number of things including swapping between any energy weapons for specific situations, Deep strike, and best of all terminator armor and 2 wounds!
Next is the Chaos Predator
. Most people load it with options I like them with just the TL LC sitting on it which allows it to move 6’ and still fire.
The next is the Chaos Vindicator
, this vehicle is probably the favored out of the tank choices. Lobbing large pie plates across the board behind a Front Armor 13 vehicle is a treat for the chaos. Then putting Daemonic possession on it makes it able to fire more times then not.
is another one of those semi effective and fluffy units. It has a Battle Cannon that is somewhat effective is also carries a TL Heavy Flamer, and an Auto cannon. They can be replaced with close combat arms, which can also be effective because the Defiler comes with Fleet to help it get there faster.
Lastly the Chaos Land Raider
is the heaviest of the tanks in the CSM codex unfortunately it does not have anything fancy like power of the machine spirit but it still is a great assault vehicle for the Berzerkers and Terminators. It comes with 2 TL LC’s, which don’t make it entirely useless from range as well.
The Greater Daemon
as well as the Lesser Daemons
are not all that great. They are unpredictable as far as when they come in. they give kill points with ease due to their terrible save. The only good thing is when you are tied up in combat and the Greater Daemon shows up to clear-cut your squad out. The only down side is that its at the cost of a champ. I do not like these and they totally killed the Daemons in this codex in my opinion they are fluffy but certainly not strengths of the CSM arsenal any more.
Well I hope this sheds some light on the codex and what every unit is about. I will probably keep revising this as there is always things to be added and removed as you re-read your work. So toss information and support your statements and I will add things if they are justifiable.
Thanks to the following to critiquing my tactica: